By Akmaral ABEN: –
Kazakhstan is ready for cooperation based on partnership, pragmatism and ensuring regional and global security.
Nursultan Nazarbayev offers his vision within the context of partnership between Kazakhstan and the European Union, to unite the Eurasian Economic Union, Silk Road Economic Belt and the European Union into a single integration project called “Greater Eurasia.”
“We believe that partnership in Eurasia can strengthen global system and we are ready to actively contribute to the cause of maintaining international stability and security,” – Nursultan Nazarbayev.
The First President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev, during his visit to Brussels in October 2018, made new peace initiatives, meeting with leaders of Asia, Europe and the EU, also speaking at the Asia-Europe forum, spoke about the need for a global dialogue for cooperation.
According to Nursultan Nazarbayev, the process of establishing dialogue should cover not only economic aspects, but also security issues, formation of a single Eurasian security space under the auspices of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. The joint activities of the EU and the OSCE could help create common platform for economic cooperation and security.
Cooperation between the EU and the EEU can be an important factor in easing political tensions and the “engine” of Eurasian economic progress.
Nursultan Nazarbayev also spoke about his vision of the “Greater Eurasia” project as integration of integration, in the context of partnership between Kazakhstan and the European Union, in an interview with the Belgian publication EurActiv
“In the context of our partnership with the European Union, I believe special attention could be drawn to my vision to bring together the Eurasian Economic Union, the Silk Road Economic Belt and the European Union into a single integration project that can be called “Greater Eurasia.”
The economic advantages of such synergy are evident. By means of Kazakhstan’s new overland transcontinental corridors, constructed under the Nurly Zhol national programme, the country managed to significantly reduce transportation of goods from the Asia-Pacific region to Europe to two weeks. These new opportunities contribute to the development of the entire Eurasian continent, and today we are working to rally around the idea of “Greater Eurasia” our European partners”, said Nursultan Nazarbayev.
He also noted that in 2015 Kazakhstan concluded an agreement on expanded partnership and cooperation with the EU. The European Union supports Kazakhstan’s policy of global integration politically and economically, as well as wide-ranging reforms in key areas of our country’s public and social life. As at the very dawn of independence, the first condition for stability in the country
in the foreign policy arena is the implementation of what is called “economic diplomacy” in modern times.
Nursultan Nazarbayev called for “integration of integrations” in 2016 at the plenary session of the XX Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF). He put forward a number of proposals as a response to the challenges of the time: “The Eurasian Economic Union is interested in an effective and stable European Union. Similarly, a united Europe benefits from constructive cooperation with our integration association.”
Then the head of State noted that certain norms of existing integration associations began to slow down the dynamics of economic development of the countries included in them. Re-industrialization of part of the national economies of the countries participating in such structures remains the fact.
As for the economic interaction of individual states with their neighbours that are not part of an integration association, new impassable barriers were erected. These include increased bans on technology exchange. There are various unilateral standards invented in the offices. They restrict direct investment, unauthorized bureaucratic superstructure.
He outlined the tremendous prospects opened up by the formation of common points of economic growth between the Eurasian Economic Union and the Silk Road Economic Belt opens up.
First of all, according to Nursultan Nazarbayev, it is necessary to work out mutually acceptable principles, on the basis of which the interaction of integrations will be built. The absolute priority of economic pragmatism over any manifestations of political conjuncture should be central in this regard.
“The situation when the economy is wanted to be made the stepdaughter of politics, regional and global ambitions, in my opinion, is unnatural in the 21st century. We clearly see this from the example of mutual sanctions. They significantly complicate the development of global economy and negatively affect emerging markets.
The conjugation of economic spaces of the European Union and the Eurasian Economic Union has great potential for a breakthrough in the development of both the whole of Greater Eurasia and the world as a whole. I have been and remain a firm supporter of such a process, constantly raising this issue at meetings with our European partners,” the head of State noted at the plenary session of the XX Petersburg Economic Forum in 2016.
The proposal of Nursultan Nazarbayev at Asia-Europe Forum during his visit to Brussels in October 2018 year can be said by continuing his line on the need to establish a dialogue between the EU and the EAEU voiced at SPIEF in 2016, and another step-in implementation of “Greater Eurasia” project.
Kazakhstan is interested in implementation of key concept of ASEM to strengthen the interconnectedness of Eurasian continent countries and in this connection raises the question of interaction of the multilateral institutions of Europe and Asia.
Nazarbayev believes that Central Asia is a region of unique opportunities and a large, as yet untapped potential. Ensuring its sustainable development, stability and prosperity is an entirely achievable task.
In his opinion, the time has come to hold a Forum of Asian and European Regional Organizations under the auspices of ASEM. He is confident that the partnership will be a good bridge to ensure interconnectedness between the ASEM member countries.
Kazakhstan, in addition to the role of a transit-transport bridge between Europe and Asia, offers its territory as a hub for the promotion of European business, investment, technology, science and culture in Asia.
The President also spoke about the important role the Assembly of People of Kazakhstan (APK) can make in implementation of ASEM People to People initiative. We note that many European countries and the CIS countries are interested in APK structure itself and its work in inter-ethnic issues, are ready to learn from and exchange experience. The Assembly is chaired by the First President of Kazakhstan Nazarbayev, has its own law, its own deputies in the Parliament of the
country, and this shows its status and role in the development of the country. The Assembly of the People of Kazakhstan today is the only institution in the world with a political status.
In his interview, Nazarbayev spoke about Kazakhstan’s support for Afghanistan, for many years has consistently contributed to efforts of international community to stabilize situation in Afghanistan, annually providing financial, technical and humanitarian assistance. In his opinion, under the auspices of the UN, global community should continue to render diverse assistance to
Kabul in order to restore the long-suffering Afghanistan. The development of transport infrastructure is especially important for realizing the enormous potential of this country and the entire Central Asian region.
In recent years, Kazakhstan has increasingly manifested itself as an intermediary in resolving conflict situations arising in the world.
There is a positive and highly successful experience of mediation and presentation on Syria site.
There were many factors in favour of such a role of Kazakhstan, good and trusting relations with three main external players – Russia, Turkey and Iran and with the negotiators from Syria, including the Syrian armed opposition.
The Geneva and Astana processes are complementary formats for negotiations on Syria, but Astana processes were the only platform where all the parties involved took part in the dialogue, which was not the case with the Geneva Agreements.
It was Astana that was able to put irreconcilable opponents, including representatives of the military opposition of Syria, behind one negotiating table.
The Astana format was launched in order to relieve Geneva of that unnecessary burden, which always existed in the form of contradictions between the opposing sides, was called upon to do everything that needs to be done at the preliminary stages, to negotiate with various factions, to convince them that may be behind one negotiating table.
On 30 June 2012, members of Syria Action Group adopted the so-called Geneva communique, which provides for measures to stop the bloodshed and to establish transitional political process. Five rounds of inter-Syrian negotiations took place within the Geneva process, but they did not produce results.
In January 2017, Astana held meeting, where Iran, Russia and Turkey agreed to establish a tripartite mechanism for monitoring the cease-fire in de-escalation zones.
As you can see, the result from Kazakhstan’s role in conflict situations is obvious.
“I would like to note that we are not trying to single-handedly solve complex, almost intractable problems for others. We only want to help opposing parties take the path of dialogue. If we manage to help them to make their choice in favour of peace talks, and not military actions, then this is no mean accomplishment” Nazarbayev believes.
Kazakhstan is ready to continue to assume the role of a responsible mediator in solving urgent international problems, and it is crucial for the country to continue efforts in this direction.